About Us

Established in 1997

Our love of horses brought us together. Our respect for the horses we train and ride inspired us to create Happy Horse Yoke.

Our Story

Alejandro Valdivia Zuniga invented the Happy Horse Yoke in 1997 while training a horse that was difficult to work with. About eight years later, along came a horse named Davos that gave many riders a tough time, even breaking a rider’s arm. When tasked to tame Davos, Alejandro started using the Happy Horse Yoke with him. Alejandro trained with Davos for months, mainly using the Yoke. Davos went from ordinary horse to extraordinary winner, participating in the best horse shows in the U.S. and Europe. He competed in the 2012 Olympics and obtained a Bronze Medal, competing individually.

Over the years, Alejandro would bump into competitive equestrian, Marcus Gruenthal. Eventually, Alejandro gave Marcus a Yoke to try on one of his horses and he was hooked. Marcus became a great addition to the Happy Horse team. Marcus then introduced Alejandro to horse enthusiast and amateur jumper, Linda Bamman. She joined Marcus and Alejandro as an investor. The three formed a partnership and patented the Happy Horse Yoke.

These magnificent creatures communicate with us through their breathing, their movements when they’re walking, when we ride them, and even by the way they simply look at us. — Alejandro

Who We Are

Alejandro F Valdivia Zuniga

Growing up in Guadalajara, Mexico, I looked up to my grandfather and father. They ignited the passion I have for horses. At an early age, they taught me how to take care of horses, how to ride, and how to connect with them. One of the most crucial things my father showed me is that horses are all different. The same devices and reins do not work on all horses. All horses have different needs and we as caretakers and trainers have to adjust to them. It was my father’s wisdom and his eagerness to invent products for horses that inspired me to follow in his footsteps and invent my own gadgets. I migrated to the United States in 1993. I was lucky to find a job with great people who trusted my work and gave me the opportunity to prove that my inventions work.

Linda Bammann

I am an amateur horseman with a passion for riding and building relationships with horses. I grew up in Minnesota in a non-horsey family but with a strong desire to be around horses. I began taking lessons at age 6, mucking stalls and cleaning horses to pay for the lesson program and the membership for a local fox hunting organization. During my business career in financial services, I realized that something was missing in my life and concluded it was, indeed, the connection I had with horses as a child. At age 30, I reacquainted myself with horses and took up the sport of 3-Day eventing. I began to truly understand the importance of direct, unfiltered, subtle communication between horse and rider. I have now evolved to focus on showjumping and have the pleasure of getting involved as a partner in the Happy Horse Yoke project, which marries my business background with my joy of connecting with horses. I currently compete as an amateur in jumping classes at various levels and simply love to ride.

Marcus Gruenthal

I started riding at the age of 10. I was lucky to have had great horses as a Junior and Young Rider. At the age of 16, I started working at a Sales Barn in Germany for about 4 years and worked with plenty of young horses. I have been in the United States since I was 26 years old. I met my wife Renee in 2009 and now we run Baltic Coast Stable LLC. We specialize in Sales Horses, clients, and the development of Young Horses. I always try to find ways to get the best possible result out of our horses in the most natural and proper manner with traditional and basic training. Currently, I’m competing at the national Grand Prix Level.

Laughing Horse Innovations

  • (352) 949-0123
  • marcus.gruenthal@hotmail.com
  • 9295 NW Hwy 225A

Ocala, FL, 34482

Get in Touch

We enjoy talking about Happy Horse and creating the best possible environment for the horses we love. Please contact us with any questions you have.